In Sports News this Monday: After reaching fourth round in Paris Karolína Plíšková discusses her now regular appearances in second week of Grand Slam events; Kvitová “still can’t feel two fingers”; no new Czech FA chief, yet; and Dukla win Prague Mayor’s Eights once again.
Though it is of course a tall order, the Czech tennis star Karolína Plíšková will become world number one if she can win her next three matches at the French Open in Paris. The current number three clinched a place in the fourth round after overcoming Carina Witthoeft of Germany 7-5 6-1 on Sunday.
The 25-year-old will now face Veronica Cepede of Paraguay, ranked 97th, for a place in last eight in Roland Garros. It is the first time Plíšková has reached the fourth round at the French Open – and represents her third last-16 appearance in a row in Grand Slam tournaments.
“I’m grateful in particular to the US Open. Since then, even when I don’t play the best tennis I have always been capable of getting through the third round. Before the third round you never have seeded opponents. So maybe that and the fact I’m in good shape mentally explains have I’ve managed to get through the third round the last three times.”
Plíšková will play Cepede on Monday evening, after the recording of our show.
Meanwhile, though the previous Czech women’s number one, Petra Kvitová, made a welcome return at Roland Garros last week, she says she has some way to go in overcoming the effects of a knife attack at her home in December. Indeed, Kvitová told journalists she still hasn’t recovered feeling in two of her fingers.
The Czech Football Association failed to elect a new chairman at a meeting on Friday. Two candidates, Martin Malík and Petr Fousek, were unable to garner the majority needed to win the post, meaning Miroslav Pelta remains FA chief. Pelta is in custody after being charged with large-scale corruption centred on abuse of state grants. A special FA assembly must now be held before the end of November.
On the field, the Czech national team are preparing for a friendly against Belgium on Monday night. The match will serve as a warmup for an away World Cup qualifier against Norway on Saturday. The Czechs are currently third in their group with eight points, compared to 15 for favourites Germany and 10 for second-placed Northern Ireland.
Dukla Prague won the Pražské primátorky, or the Prague Mayor’s Eights, for the 38th time in succession on Sunday, finishing a full two seconds ahead of four other teams. It was the 104th time the rowing race – one of the oldest sporting events in Europe – was held on the Vltava below the capital’s Vyšehrad.